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The Simple Life - Reading Matters

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  • Sheryl Simons
    The Simple Life ~~ Quotes for the New Year ~~ Our small efforts at kindness can change people s lives more than we will ever know. Since it takes so little
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 19, 2004
      The Simple Life

      ~~ Quotes for the New Year ~~

      Our small efforts at kindness can change people's lives more than we
      will ever know. Since it takes so little time and energy to change
      the world for the better, why not make an effort to do it every day?
      ~~Pat Williams

      "Happiness is making the most of what you have."~~Rosamunde Pilcher

      ~~~ ~~~

      ~~~ Reading Tips for Kids ~~~

      Visiting our grandchildren, Teanna, Jonte, and Tony, they
      proudly showed us their report cards. They are making great
      strides. Our daughter Amy is due some credit here. She, for the
      past year has been implementing an hour a day of reading. After the
      reading is done, the kids are rewarded with computer game times, and
      other fun activities. Amy is a smart mom. She knows that if a kid
      can read well, he or she has a big boost in all their other school
      work. In this day and age, it's hard to be a strong parent and do
      what is right for your kids. There is a lot of "kid pressure". All
      kids learn the art of whining, complaining, and guilt trips to keep
      their parents from doing exactly what they should be doing –
      encouraging kids to learn. I can just hear them "Mom, nobody else's
      mom make them read every day!", "Mom, I hate reading," or "Mom, I
      just don't feel like it today." Of course, they probably miss a few
      days now and then, but they wouldn't be making such great progress
      if they missed many.
      Here are a few suggestions for making reading a great program in
      your family~
      ~Kids usually need to run and play for a while after school, so
      reading might be good right before or after dinner, or an hour
      before bedtime.
      ~ Try reading with your kids. Find an exciting book that the whole
      family loves, such as "Swiss Family Robinson" and read a chapter a
      ~ Let your kids see that you can shut off the television and spend
      time reading while they are reading.
      ~ All kids like to trade off reading every other page with their
      parents, especially while learning to read.
      ~ Make a family tradition of going to the library once a week. When
      a kid gets to pick the books he gets to read, he is much more
      ~ When getting started, there will be protests. It will take a
      month for a new idea to become a habit. After that, the protests
      will, for the most part, die. Hang in there, parents!
      ~ There are great children books that parents will want to read to
      your children and that will become family favorites. I can think of
      several that my kids and I read over and over, and we never tired
      of. One book, "Where's Andy", was about a little boy who was
      following his mother around while she looked for him, pretending she
      didn't know he was behind her. This became a fun family game.
      Another book, "Love You Forever" was a favorite.
      ~ There are books for every reason. When someone in your family
      dies, look for a book that helps children understand death. If your
      children is experiencing sickness, death of a pet, a bully, or loss
      of a friend, how to do "anything", there is a book about that.
      Books are tools to help families talk about all sorts of things.
      Use them! If you can't find a book you are looking for, as the
      librarian, she will be able to find just the book you are looking
      ~ Fun is the most important idea. The better the reader, the better
      your child can do ANYTHING. When they see reading as fun, you know
      you have won the battle.
      ~ Winter is a great time of year to get started, when playing
      outdoors is not always and option, and daylight hour are short. Get
      started now and by the time summer is here, kids will be reading on
      their own!
      ~ In the beginning, you might want to try rewarding the children for
      not complaining, good progress, or finishing a difficult book.
      Rewards might vary by getting to pick the next family book to read,
      help cook a favorite meal, or other special treats.

      Be the #1 teacher in your child's life – you already are!

      ~~~ ~~~
      Delicious and Easy Eclair Dessert

      My grandmother loved to make Eclairs. They really aren't that
      hard to make, but here is an easier version your family will love!

      2 packages instant French vanilla pudding mix 2 c. milk
      1 box graham crackers
      1 (9 oz.) container frozen whipped topping, thawed Frosting:
      1 square unsweetened chocolate
      3 T. butter or margarine
      1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
      1 t. vanilla
      3 T. milk
      To make cake, butter a 9x13 inch pan. Place 12 graham crackers on
      bottom. Mix together milk, pudding and whipped topping. Once
      thickened, smooth half on crackers. Place another 12 crackers on
      top. Spread with remaining mixture and another layer of crackers.
      For frosting: Melt chocolate over low heat. Add butter and blend
      until smooth. Add sugar, milk and vanilla; mix together until
      smooth. Pour frosting over the graham crackers and refrigerate. Best
      if made the night before.

      ~~~ ~~~

      Winter Gardening

      This is the time of year to get a great start on gardening.
      While you are sitting by the fire pouring over the seed catalogs,
      keep a list of seeds or plants that you would like. Research their
      growing requirements. Make sure they will work in your area – no
      sense wasting money on plants that are zone 7 if you are zone 4 or
      5. Divide the plants into groups that like sun, shade, moisture,
      can tolerate dry conditions, etc.
      There are lots of on-line gardening groups that have seed
      swaps, or check with your friends and neighbors. Start a gardening
      club. Get together once a month and find out what you can trade.
      Bring a salad and really have fun!
      Take pictures of your garden at different times of year. Keep
      them together so that you can remember where plants bloom, colors,
      and when they bloom, etc. These pictures will also help you
      remember when your plants need to be divided, or fed.

      Keeping it Simple,

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